Sometimes, certain things in life just fall in place. Bradley Braves graduate goalkeeper Bryce Logan knows this all too well.
In high school, Logan found his way onto Crossfire Premier Soccer Club’s roster, two hours away from his hometown of Bellingham, Washington. Lucky for him, his academy coach doubled as the goalkeeping coach for the University of Washington Huskies.
After accepting a spot at Washington, Logan redshirted his freshman year, training behind more experienced goalkeepers. Eventually, he went on to earn a pick on the College Soccer News National Team of the Week in September of 2019, eight shutouts and a career record of 12-4 for the program.
However, at the conclusion of his undergraduate degree, his coaches advised him to use his extra year of eligibility to get more reps at another school if he wanted to go pro.
After shopping around the transfer portal, Logan found himself coming to Peoria.
“I just got a good feeling from Bradley,” Logan said. “[With] a coach that cared about me and wanted the best [for] me. That was something a little bit new that I knew I needed to explore and bet on.”
With two freshman goalkeepers and an injured Nick Gasperi, Logan came to Bradley at a time when the Braves needed experience in between the posts. Regardless of his experience, he knew he needed to make a quick impression.
“I had a fresh slate again,” Logan said. “With it being my fifth year … I knew that going into any program I was going to have about two weeks to show I was the guy.”
Despite taking a gap semester due to the pandemic pushing the season back, Logan hit the ground running and head coach Jim DeRose took note.
“Right from [the] jump, he brought in a training mentality that a pro has,” DeRose said. “He did it every day.”
At Washington, Logan frequently faced off against Pac-12 foes consistently ranked among the top 25 in the country. According to him, it gave him composure heading into Missouri Valley Conference play.
“It’s all just soccer at the end of the day,” Logan said. “You walk out and you’re doing the same thing you’ve done your whole life … [Playing in the Pac-12] helped me realize it’s not that big of a deal.”
That experience allowed Logan to pick up accolades in his one semester on the Hilltop. He earned Defensive Player of the Week in March, a first-team All-Conference pick as well as the MVC’s Goalkeeper of the Year award.
Fellow graduate teammate Gerit Wintermeyer had no doubt about Logan’s standing among Valley goal stoppers.
“Bryce is by far, definitely the best goalkeeper in the league,” Wintermeyer said. “If you compare his shots saved to the second goalkeeper shots saved … there [are] no questions.”
While he was only with the team for about four months, DeRose is already sure of Logan’s legacy.
“Bryce was nothing short of spectacular from the day he walked on to campus,” DeRose said. “I’ve been fortunate to coach great goalkeepers; pros and All-Americans. We have a very rich tradition and history of goalkeeping here. He’s been among the best we’ve had.”
Looking ahead, Logan still has an extra year of eligibility due to the pandemic. However, Logan’s aspirations go beyond college soccer, so he isn’t sure he’ll make use of it.
Right now, many lower-level soccer clubs in the U.S. still don’t know if they can have seasons and others are in the middle of their seasons. Meanwhile overseas, many European clubs are wrapping up play. According to Logan, this makes planning ahead more complicated.
The next few months will be unpredictable for Logan, but he knows what he needs to do.
“We’re trying to throw together my highlight reel,” Logan said. “It’s a weird time. … I’m trying to, one, stay healthy … and then train and stay fit and stay sharp so that I can go at a moment’s notice.”
With the pandemic still currently throwing a wrench in everyone’s plans, Logan can hope for things to eventually once again fall into place.